Letter: New Hampshire’s political bottleneck on energy

Monday, April 17, 2017

I’m writing in response to an article by Jim Roche, “New Hampshire Needs to Stop Tilting at Windmills” (Monitor, April 6)

In fact, our wholesale electricity supply prices are at record lows and New Hampshire consumes only half of the power it produces. The pain in our electric rates comes from stranded costs, above market power purchase agreements, and the highest transmission rates in the nation. It’s no surprise that the Business and Industry Association pushes pipelines since its “energy committee” is funded in part by the American Petroleum Institute.

It defies logic why ISO-New England is quoted in defense of more pipelines and generation capacity. We pay the highest (twice) transmission rates in the nation, had a catastrophe in 2013-2014 when ISO-NE – the grid operator – wouldn’t contract for liquefied natural gas as part of the Winter Reliability Program, and we are the last regional transmission organization to implement FERC Order 1000, which would make transmission projects subject to competitive bidding.

Most companies use competitive suppliers for their energy, but they’re still saddled with outrageous demand and transmission costs. The BIA suggests their member companies have implemented every possible energy efficiency measure. Perhaps the BIA should conduct a survey of their membership to quantify that? I know Sen. Martha Fuller Clark has also asked for that data.

Are BIA Chamber companies aware that the BIA lobbies against nearly every bill supporting energy efficiency and renewable energy and for major infrastructure projects built at ratepayer expense? They say they believe in an “all of the above” strategy, but their legislative testimony says otherwise.

Pat Martin